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Resolutions & Amendments

36th International Convention - Anaheim, CA (2004)

State Legislative Agenda for Protecting Public Services

Resolution No. 104
36th International Convention
June 21 - 25, 2004
Anaheim, CA


State governments have struggled with budget deficits totaling more than $235 billion over the past four fiscal years; and


Local governments also have faced significant fiscal shortfalls due in part to cuts in state aid for local services; and


Anti-tax, anti-government groups wrongly blame state budget problems on excess spending, and have used this crisis to attack public employees and to push for deep cuts in public services that citizens rely upon, including education, transportation, public safety and health care; and


The true causes of the state budget crisis are a weak economy, huge state tax cuts in recent years, unchecked spending on contracted services, tax breaks for businesses and special interests, corporate tax avoidance, job flight including overseas outsourcing, the escalation of health insurance costs including the cost of prescription drugs and unfunded federal mandates and federal tax changes that cost states revenue; and


AFSCME has developed and introduced a State Legislative Agenda for Protecting Public Services which addresses the true causes of the state fiscal crisis and puts forward real solutions to budget shortfalls. This State Legislative Agenda includes "Taxpayer's Right to Know" disclosure of state contracts, tax expenditures and economic development incentives; closing corporate tax loopholes; stopping overseas outsourcing of state work; controlling high prescription drug costs; increasing top-bracket income taxes for the wealthiest state residents; modernizing the sales tax and decoupling from federal changes to states' taxes.


That AFSCME affiliates and the International Union make it a priority to promote the AFSCME State Legislative Agenda in state capitals throughout the country to provide real solutions to state budget problems, to save public services slated for cuts, to protect our public employee members and to strengthen state revenue systems to meet today's and tomorrow's public needs; and


That the International Union provide technical support for AFSCME affiliates that introduce State Legislative Agenda bills, with research, fact sheets, testimony and other support; and


That AFSCME leaders and members lobby their legislators to make them aware of our State Legislative Agenda, the ways it can protect public services in our states and its importance to us as a union.


International Executive Board